Confessions of a perfectionist

Discussion in 'Gallery & Designs' started by fimdan, Mar 12, 2007.

  1. fimdan

    fimdan Member

    Ok, you are thinking, what in world is this thread about?

    Well I just wanted to ask you, how the hell do you deal with all the frustrations of designing a model? I look at this site pretty much everyday, I see you guys making all these wonderful models. How do you find the drive to finish it all? How do you explain to yourself that this is good enough, and that you will not make this or that more complex, more beautiful?
    I know I like designing models, I am skilled enough at Rhino to handle complicated projects but, here is the confession part, I am a perfectionist.

    Whenever I design my model, I want to do it right. I want to make it to be like best models out there. The sad truth is that I just cannot finish. I try different things, I change everything around 10s of times, and finally drop the entire project because I am convinced that my model will not be good enough. That's what happened with my 2 previews models. I feel that I could easily design a model similar to those published in the 80's in MM but as soon as I start, I see that I could make something better and I end up not making anything at all.

    Living a busy life does not help either. Thank god for deadlines, otherwise I would have a hard time finishing anything.

    Anyways, recently I was inspired again by ppl around here. I started another model, a Russian sub k-21. Found some good drawings online. Feels easier to design than planes. I will not show it yet because I don't want to litter the forum with another unfinished project.

    Anyway, Can you guys give me some hints on how you deal with these issues? How do you fight those creative desires, how do you get to the damn finish line.

    Thanks for understanding,

  2. papertrain

    papertrain Member

    In what I am working on I realize that you only can do so much to make the model perfect. You will never attain perfection. Just close. There is the sense that you want to make it as good as you can. You can puch the envelope but only within the confines of what paper can and cant do. The medium does have limitations. There are just some things paper can nto do but if you work with in those confines you should be able to come thru. Also you want to see the project thru and there are just some days you want to chuck the whole thing. Back away a few days and then go back to it. It does take sticktuitveness to complete it. There are going to be challanges alone the way and parts that you would rather not deal with but to have a creditable model you just have to do it. Dont give up.
    Let it aside maybe and go to something else and then later come back with new insight and new learning to finish it.:grin:
  3. 46rob

    46rob Member

    First--this is a low priority event. I work on it only when I really feel like tackling it. Then--you have to realize that there has to be compromise between detail and buildability. There are some incredibly detailed models out there--and some barely detailed ones. Each appeals to a diffeent segment of the hobby. Decide who you are designing for: and then go about creating accordingly. Once the design standards or the model are set--don't deviate. Remember, these are actually paper sculptures, representing something. Somoetimes you may have to change a measurement for one reason or another. might throw the scale off a bit--but it increases the overall ease of construction. Live with it. The most beautiful and highly detailed model is a failure if it's not a pleasure to build. For a first model--try to create a very simple design--nothing like a success to fuel confidence. BTW--I don't use Rhino or other CAD programs to create my models. Most were done using software that costs under $100.
  4. paper warrior

    paper warrior Member

    Just do something simple and gradualy make it better until you are satisfied. On my Mobelwagen I just started out with some restangles for the sides, then resized them, then added apaint scheme, and a few details.
  5. Rick Thomson

    Rick Thomson Member

    I have to weigh in with GB here, builders have it easier (albiet more models have made their first flight as a crumpled ball of scrap into the round file than not in my case).

    Repainters ( the stage that I have managed to sort of reach, maybe, abit...) have their trials matching things up, but the designers have set the boundries.

    Designing a model from scratch? This causes my mouth to froth, and my head to bounce off walls...
  6. fructose

    fructose Member

    I started with something really easy. Rockets are just tubes, so they are pretty easy to design. Painting it is a little more difficult, but not to bad. You just have to realize that at scale, certain details will either not show up, or be really really small.

    Most people don't want a 100% accurate model because that would be very difficult to make. 80% is what I think most people consider acceptable, but I try for the 90-95% range. There are things that could be improved, but the time necessary for them out-weighs the benefits you get from them.

    On my current design, I'm going to leave a few details out and just fudge some others. And unless I am looking at it from less than a foot, I won't even notice them.
  7. Willja67

    Willja67 Member

    Good to see you back fimdan I was wondering where you went. Sorry to hear about your dumping the Dewoitine that was quite an instructive thread. As for myself when I can't stand a project anymore I start a new one and when I can't stand that one anymore I come back to previous projects or start a new one. Not very effective but this is supposed to be fun. I have come to the conclusion that making friends doing this hobby is the most valuable compensation as there will never be enough money to pay for the time I put into it. I admit that since I have accomplished my goal of releasing my first commercial model I am not so uptight about things like this anymore. That being said I did cause myself some embaressment by trying to release the model before it was ready.

    I agree with whoever said to just finish something then upgrade as you feel like it.
  8. Fishcarver

    Fishcarver Active Member


    If I might dip a Canadian oar into this thread, and as one who has instructed a novice carver(also modeler) or two, you may be suffering from what I call "project in the face" syndrome. In other words, you are so concentrated on getting ONE thing done, and DONE PERFECTLY, that you are missing the lessons that the projects are trying to teach you.

    Try this: save the work that you have done now. Do not trash anything. Start another design project, and work it along to where you are with the first one. You will be surprised. Many of the problems that you had with the first one or two will miraculously solve themselves. The next one will create further challenges. So, we progress....

    Personally, I have a box of "work in progress" that my wife calls my "critter crate". They are woodcarvings of various birds, fish etc that I have set aside until my skill level catches up to my abilities. I am catching up: some of these are now only 5 years old....:)

    Above all, do not be too hard on yourself. Perfection is illusory: and if the 1:1 design were perfect, it would be flying today.

    Meanwhile, keep up your work. More than one "professional model designer's" work has "crashed" in this forum.

    You do good work. Please do more of it!

    Your Canadian friend
  9. Darwin

    Darwin Member

    Some advice I once received....strive for excellence, perfection is God's realm.
  10. BARX2

    BARX2 Member

    I'm not a designer, but something of a perfectionist. When I do something that I think is OK, others praise the heck out it. I realize that I'm my own worst critic and maybe my standards are too high. Could that be the case with you, too? Have you let others judge your work? You may find that what is not good enough for you is exactly what others are looking for. :)
  11. Fishcarver

    Fishcarver Active Member


    Vote me with you.

  12. fructose

    fructose Member

    Truer words are seldom spoken.

    I totally agree.
  13. Amazyah

    Amazyah Senior Member

    It sounds to me that you just need to focus on exactly what you are trying to achieve.
    What is your final goal with this particular subject?
    Until you have an end result in mind, that you want to achieve, you are lost.
    Don't even think about what anyone else wants or might want, your the artist!
    Work toward what you want.
    There may be many revisions along the way, but you know what your working toward.

  14. thewoodengraver

    thewoodengraver Active Member

    I think the answer is simple. Please do not think it is harsh.
    If you are not having fun, quit.
  15. Mark_1984

    Mark_1984 Guest

    My profound t'pence worth. Works of art are never finished, merely abandoned.
  16. Lex

    Lex Dollmaker

    I'm with TWE on this one. Hobbies are for fun, so if I don't feel like doing something, I'll just forget about it for sometime.
  17. fimdan

    fimdan Member

    Thanks to all for all the good ideas. Good stuff, will definitely apply some of these to my current project. I think I will just focus on getting something done, rather than getting it done perfect. Finishing anything will most certainly boost my confidence. Ok, enough of that, time to get to work.

    Thanks again,

  18. wunwinglow

    wunwinglow Active Member

    I have the most perfect models in my head. Getting them out is a problem though, one I rarely solve. That and having a huge amount of enthusiasm for my latest project, until my next latest project starts rearing its ugly head, and then the previous project gets forgotten, unfinished.

    I don't have a solution. So I'm on my way to perdition, if the old saying is correct....


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